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Gov’t plugs $30K for National Culinary Team

- Premier Fahie gives pep talk to team
Premier and Minister of Finance Honourable Andrew A. Fahie (R1), left, Junior Minister of Tourism Honourable Shereen D. Flax-Charles, 4th from left, and Minister for Education, Culture, Agriculture, Fisheries, Youth Affairs and Sports, Dr The Hon Natalio D. Wheatley (R7), 5th from left, pose with some members of the National Culinary team on June 12, 2019. Photo: Team of Reporters
Premier and Minister of Finance Honourable Andrew A. Fahie (R1), left, savouring a sample provided by the National Culinary Team. Photo: Team of Reporters
Premier and Minister of Finance Honourable Andrew A. Fahie (R1), left, savouring a sample provided by the National Culinary Team. Photo: Team of Reporters
On Wednesday June 12, 2019 under the management of the BVI Chamber of Commerce and Hotel Association (BVICCHA), the National Culinary team staged their second practice dinner of a cocktail and a three course meal for at the Tropical Fusion Restaurant, West End, Tortola. Photo: Team of Reporters
On Wednesday June 12, 2019 under the management of the BVI Chamber of Commerce and Hotel Association (BVICCHA), the National Culinary team staged their second practice dinner of a cocktail and a three course meal for at the Tropical Fusion Restaurant, West End, Tortola. Photo: Team of Reporters
WEST END, Tortola, VI- Confident that that Virgin Islands National Culinary Team will be returning to the territory with gold from the 2019 edition of the Taste of the Caribbean, the Government of the Virgin Islands has plugged some $30, 000 to ensure the team is well equipped and supported.

“For us its more than the money, its making sure the BVI name [grows] greater than it already is,” Premier and Minister of Finance Honourable Andrew A. Fahie (R1) stated.

The event is being held in Miami, Florida from June 21 – 26, 2019 and will see a VI team of eleven and other support/backup members taking on the annual challenge in food and beverage competitions.

On Wednesday June 12, 2019 under the management of the BVI Chamber of Commerce and Hotel Association (BVICCHA), the team staged their second practice dinner of a cocktail and a three course meal for at the Tropical Fusion Restaurant, West End, Tortola.

Hon Flax-Charles strongly lobbied for additional $20K for team

While Premier Fahie and Minister for Education, Culture, Agriculture, Fisheries, Youth Affairs and Sports, Dr The Hon Natalio D. Wheatley (R7) did not make it on time to sample the full three course meal, they were confident those present would have given the team helpful feedbacks.

Addressing the gathering of close to fifty persons, Premier Fahie announced the approval of $20, 000 for the team in addition to $10, 000 previously committed by Dr Wheatley.

Junior Minister of Tourism Honourable Shereen D. Flax-Charles, who was also present at the event and was able to assess the team from start to end, was applauded by Premier Fahie and the BVICCHA for being a rock and strong advocate for the team.

Premier Fahie told the audience and the team that it was through the strong lobbying and representation by Hon Flax-Charles that his office approved that additional $20,000.

Trust your insight not eyesight- Premier Fahie

Premier Fahie also shared welcomed words of encouragement for the team. “I wish each of you the best because I am one of those who honestly feels that you already born great. So every member of the culinary team, you already born great.”

He admonished the team not to feel intimidated when coming up against the competition. “Remember nobody is bigger than you, because greater is he that is in you than he that is in the world. So don’t be afraid of what you see … never trust your eyesight when you get into turbulent times in competitions, always trust your insight.”

“Because your eyesight concentrates on all your circumstances around you and looking at how big the country is and wondering if you can compete with them … that’s your eyesight, but your insight is where the hope is built.”

This year the local team will participate in the regional event with a much larger pool of supporters in the hope that their confidence will be further boosted and give them the needed support to push harder for the gold.

VI Culinary Delegation

The 2019 BVI delegation include: Senior Chef Caswall Pondt, Necker Island, Team Coordinator, Chef Tonya Malone-Smith of The Virgin Islands School of Technical Studies, Jr Chef Ariq Flax-Clarke of Johnson and Whales University, Jr Chef Lakesha Barry of Johnson and Whales, Jr Chef Lakeisha King of Johnson and Whales and Jr Chef Radiance Modeste of The Virgin Islands School of Technical Studies, Jolece Fraser of H. Lavity Stoutt Community College (HLSCC), Zhanae Christopher of Maria’s by the Sea, Neville Tucker of Tropical Fusion and Jadiel Gibson of the Virgin Islands School of Technical Studies. The team’s mixologist will be Everson Rawlins.

Chef Kenneth Molyneaux,a Gold Medallist of the Taste of Caribbean will not be a part of the delegation this year because he has now earned a place as a judge at this prestigious event.

Taste of the Caribbean is the region’s premier culinary competition, food and beverage educational exchange, and Caribbean cultural showcase. It provides a forum for food and beverage professionals to gather practical information, develop skills, sample and purchase, strengthen and establish supplier relationships, and meet new vendors.

The VI will compete in the individual competitions such as, Beef, Seafood, Chocolate, Junior Chef of the Year, Bartender’s Competition-Vodka, Rum, Non Alcoholic and Bartender of the Year. The BVI will also be a sending a team to the Caribbean 305. The Caribbean 305 showcase is now the biggest Caribbean Celebrate in Miami! The only event where you can enjoy the cuisines of 17 Caribbean destinations in one night, open bar, unlimited tapas style dishes, music and entertainment.

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